The southwest monsoon has withdrawn three days earlier than expected from Pune and 45% of Maharashtra.
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For various parts of India, especially Maharashtra, the monsoon has been more of a roller coaster ride. Due to the delayed monsoon in Pune on June 25 to its inability to arrive and progress to other parts of Maharashtra, many parts of the state received meager rainfall. The monsoon has withdrawn from three major parts: Mumbai, Nagpur, and Pune.
In Pune, the monsoon usually withdraws on October 9, but this year, it has withdrawn from the city three days before its usual date. In the past two years, there has been a pattern of delayed withdrawal of rain. The last two years witnessed the monsoon withdrawing much later, after October 20, as compared to the present time.
The usual time for monsoon withdrawal from Mumbai and Pune is around October 8 and 9, respectively. With the withdrawal of monsoon days before the expected time, dry weather conditions are anticipated in Pune and some other major parts of Maharashtra. The hot weather in the state will only add to the woes of the citizens. In fact, September was the hottest month.
Here’s what the IMD said
The officials of the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said on Friday that the south monsoon has withdrawn from 45% of Maharashtra.
Anupam Kashyapi, head of the weather forecasting division at IMD Pune, said, “On Friday (October 6), the southwest monsoon withdrew from all three major cities of Maharashtra, including Mumbai, Pune, and Nagpur.” He also added, “The monsoon will withdraw from the rest of the state in the next four to five days.” According to the IMD, Maharashtra is likely to experience ‘above-normal’ temperatures in October.
The monsoon officially ended on September 30. In the monsoon season of Maharashtra, from June to September 30, the state received normal rainfall with a 4% deficit, while Pune city recorded a 10% deficit in rainfall. Shivajinagar, an area in Pune, recorded a 26% deficit, with just 44 rainy days and 446.2 mm of rainfall in the period of June 1 to September 30. The last two years have seen the monsoon withdraw from Maharashtra after October 20.
Meager rainfall due to a delayed monsoon in Pune
Usually, in Pune, the monsoon arrives mostly in the 1st or 2nd week of June. As per IMD, the monsoon normally arrives in the city on the 10th of June. But this year, the monsoon was delayed by 14 or more days. This was the second-most delayed monsoon in a decade. In the last 10 years, from 2013 to 2023, there have been only 3 instances where the monsoon arrived before the 10th of June in Pune.
As a result of Cyclone Biparjoy, the monsoon in many parts of Maharashtra was delayed this year. The monsoon arrived in Maharashtra but was yet to progress to other parts of the state, resulting in little to no rainfall in many parts of the state.
The year 2019 witnessed the most delayed monsoon on the 24th of June. Another delayed instance of the monsoon was in 2016, arriving on the 20th of June. This indicates the delayed pattern of the monsoon in Pune. With delayed monsoons and the withdrawal of rain before the usual date, the dams were left with less water than usual as compared to previous years.
This delayed rain had left many dams in Pune city, half empty with water. Dams like Khadakwasla, Panshet, Varasgoan, Bhima Akshed, and Temghar had less than 50% water availability in June.